NAME: Travis & Sara
LOCATION: Westchester, NY
SIZE/TYPE: 2000 sq. ft. 3 bedroom, 1913 house
Travis and I decided to buy a major “fixer-upper” in Westchester County, New York, when we decided our 850 square feet in Brooklyn could not accommodate a third child. The house we bought was appealing for several reasons: 1. It needed a complete overhaul, and the low price ensured we could renovate to our picky specifications. 2. We liked the open floor plan; the stair case at the back is unusual for colonial homes and was a good use of the space. 3. All homes with children should have a place that can be used as a “race track”… where the kids can run around and around in circles, thoroughly annoying anyone in the kitchen or living room.
LIVING ROOM BEFORE
Nearly every surface of the home was covered in some kind of synthetic material. We featured mirrors on one wall, faux wood paneling on others, and along the entire rear of the house was white wall paper embossed with a brick pattern. Lovely.
LIVING ROOM AFTER
We ripped all the surfaces clean, and thickened the wall with the fireplace so there would be no mantle. New wood floors had to be laid, thanks to several cats that left their mark in the old floors. A hole was cut in the wall by the basement stairs, and we installed a projector so we can watch movies on the wall above the fireplace. All radiators were stripped and painted black. We used an ebony stain with matte finish on the new oak floors. Soft cell honeycomb shades completed the look.
The old kitchen was tiny, and contained what we believe to be original cabinets. There was also a scary amount of bugs and mouse droppings.
We took out the wall between the kitchen and the dining room, and put the majority of the cabinets where the dining room had been. A partial wall was built to house our cabinet-depth fridge, and several pantries were added. We had used the melamine Ikea cabinets before in our apartment and went with them again here. The countertops are Zodiaq, an engineered stone. All appliances are Jenn air, except for the hidden Miele dishwasher. We also put cabinets along the wall to make a built in bench, with storage. This is a great place for the kids to sit, and all their art supplies are below them and easy to access.
The old office was used as a junk storage room, as far as we could tell. There was foil wall paper along one wall, and faux wood everywhere else. Acoustic tiles were on the ceiling.
We liked the idea of a built in desk that would span the length of the room. Knoll file cabinets act as a support in the middle of the desk. This is probably our favorite room in the house; certainly where we spend the most time. We had planned a large picture wall behind the desk, but so far that hasn’t happened yet. Maybe this year.
Scary, scary, scary. Not much else to say.
We kept the tub and had it reglazed. It made a huge difference. We put in white penny tile with dark grey grout, and white subway tile on the walls. We had ordered Duravit toilets and vanities, but after our backorder date was pushed back 4 months, we gave up and purchased a Porcher toilet and sink from Expo.
This old entry way had two doors, one of which did not open. We have no idea why.
We laid slate on the floor, and had one of the doors closed off. Getting the original front door functional was not easy; we’re still working out the kinks. We added a built in bench to the side, and it has bins with shoes underneath. It matches the desk. An Eames hang it all is above.